The Virginia Statewide Fire Prevention Code (VSFPC) places SEVERE limitations on hazardous
chemicals that can be used in the buildings at UVA. If the State Fire Marshal's Office (SFMO)
enforces these regulations the result will be to severely limit the chemicals that are used in
teaching and research labs both here and at all state institutions of higher education.
In April 2011, the SFMO conducted an inspection of some of the research laboratories in Jordan
Hall and found that the amounts of flammable chemicals present were beyond the limits
described in the VSFPC. Their greatest concern was the apparent lack of concern for safety and
proper management of chemicals (i.e. poor housekeeping).
Since the Office of Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) has developed an excellent working
relationship with the SFMO over the years, they asked EHS to develop and implement a
management and inspection program to improve the safety of chemicals. We MUST eliminate
the lab occupant created problems if we hope to convince the SFMO that we are managing
chemicals in a manner that ensures safety.